The first EV to appear during set up was a Fisker Karma, and its driver, Alan, kindly agreed to check in the rest of the vehicles that silently rolled into the parking lot for the next hour, representing over 199,000 oil-free miles in celebration of Austin’s contribution to the Third Annual National Plug in Day.
We were enthused to see many dual-EV families, and the number of Teslas and Volts represented was only eclipsed by the number of Leafs. Despite the rain (which we were strangely excited to see), all eleven types of vehicles signed up for the event were represented, including the Nissan LEAF, Chevrolet Volt, Tesla Model S, Ford’s C-Max Energi, Fusion Energi, and Focus Electric, Toyota RAV4 EV (2012 and later), Think City, Fisker Karma, a Vetrix scooter, and several conversions.
The talks were well-attended. Dale Bulla of Interfaith Environmental Network demonstrated the ease of vehicle charging from solar panels and resulted in several owners who do charge their plug-in vehicles from solar pointing out that we should have had “coal-free miles” as well as “oil-free miles” numbers being tallied. Actacell‘s Director of Product Management (and longtime Austin EV member) Marc Kohler presented useful and interesting information unique to plug-in vehicles, and Austin Leaf Owner’s Group and event sponsor Tim Ziegner’s panel talk extended well beyond the end time, proving the passion owners have for their electric vehicles and, we’re fairly certain, influencing several non-EV owners to make the commitment to purchasing or leasing an EV as their next vehicle. Because of time restrictions, Chris Robison of REVOLT Electric Vehicles (and longtime Austin EV member) wasn’t able to give his presentation on the future of home-brew, but he did speak one-on-one with several individuals before we wrapped up and the cars drove away from the lot as silently as they arrived.
We want to extend our appreciation to everyone who attended, presented, helped, participated in the Ride & Drive, and/or exhibited, including Town North Nissan, SunPower Corporation Texas, the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club, Austin Energy, and REVOLT Electric Vehicles. Also thanks to Tesla Owners of Texas, the Austin Leaf Owners Group and other vehicle clubs who we may not have mentioned, Larry S (for also decorating his Volt with donuts and taking photographs – linked from the Austin EV event page for the day and from where we borrowed the picture of the Karma), Brian L (for also bringing banana bread and substantially helping with cleanup), Heidi and Ken (for also helping reorganize the food and drinks), as well as Austera (Tim Ziegner) and REVOLT (Aaron Choate & Cara Fealy) for organizing and offsetting the cost of the event by providing local sponsorship.
Please direct us to any omissions or errors in our wrap-up and links to photos of the event in the comments below. and any additional comments or feedback you may have are greatly appreciated. We had fun, and we hope you did as well!